Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel defied President Donald Trump and US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) back in November stating that illegal aliens had a home in Chicago. Now, he is taking things a step further. In the wake of Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ warning that sanctuary cities, like Chicago, could lose taxpayer money that is funneled through bureaucracy via the central government for harboring illegal immigrants, the mayor has decided to push for a new plan to create an identification card that would specifically be used to make sure illegal aliens in the city could get welfare benefits with minimal risk to repatriation.
Emanuel pushed City Clerk Anna Valencia to move up the municipal ID’s time frame of one year to take care of those who are in the city illegally with taxpayer money. They will do this by not asking about immigration status and only minimal information about the person desiring the ID.
According to Ms. Valencia’s website, the ID will be “an optional, valid, government-issued ID that they can then use to access a range of services from both the private and public sectors.”
The Chicago Sun-Times reports:
“It’s going to capture just the name and the date of birth. It’s not going to capture an address,” said a source familiar with the program who asked to remain anonymous to avoid upstaging the mayor and the clerk.
“Applicants will also be able to self-designate their gender, which will be huge to the transgender and LGBTQ community. And it’s not just for undocumented individuals. It’s for people with disabilities and people who are homeless or victims of domestic violence” who will be able to designate an alternative address.
The barebones approach outlined in the ordinance follows San Francisco’s lead and avoids the problems that accompanied New York City’s version of a municipal ID, the source said.
“In the San Francisco model, applicants bring in the documents to prove someone’s identity. They hand them over to specially trained individual who can review the documents and then hand them back,” the source said. “In New York right now, they are retaining the address. We’re not going to retain any of that information that’s handed to us regarding the address.”
The next step is to issue a request for proposal for the security-laced technology portion of the program and identify ancillary benefits that might be tied a municipal ID. Those benefits may include access to banks, cultural institutions and pharmacies that offer discounts.
On the one hand, this ID is for everyone and is not asking for a lot of information, which is not necessarily a bad thing. However, if the goal is identification, how in the world does this actually accomplish the desired results?
Furthermore, if people can “self-designate their gender,” how does this help anyone identify the person accurately? How are people supposed to be accurately identified for welfare if they can just make themselves up as they go along? Chicago isn’t even requiring they have an address!
One million dollars has been allocated in the 2017 budget for the program. The first ID’s are scheduled to be issued by the end of 2017.
“At a time when many communities are experiencing setbacks or attacks on their rights, the Chicago Municipal ID program is an initiative where cities can lead by example in reducing barriers, increasing access to opportunities and empowering residents,” Valencia said in a press release.
“An individual’s background should never be a barrier to participating in the economic, social or cultural life of Chicago,” Mayor Emanuel said. “With this program we ensure that all Chicago residents have the identification they need to access vital services.”
Really? Even though they are breaking the law while “participating in the economic, social or cultural life of Chicago”?
Chicago stands to lose a lot of money in its defiance of immigration law. According to the report put out by OpenThe Books.com, Chicago received the second highest amount of federal funding on a per capita basis. The city received $5.3 billion in FY2016 from the central government via taxpayers.
This seems like a tremendous amount of wasteful spending on a program that actually doesn’t identify anyone. Good luck with that Chicago.